What does a gift of $1,000, a dozen caring hearts, nimble fingers, fabric and time have in common? Beautiful handmade quilts for foster children.
The disciple Christian women’s fellowship group at Western Oaks Christian Church, Oklahoma City, began making and donating several quilts in 2015 and 2016 for foster children serviced by Citizens Caring for Children. Citizens Caring for Children provides each new foster child a quilt on the first visit to the organization. Many times the children arrived at their organization with nothing. The handmade quilts provide comfort and something that remains theirs forever.
In 2017, the Western Oaks’ women decided to make the foster quilt program their full-time project. Since then, they have provided quilts to all the children coming to the organization. They also give funds to assist the organization with other needs for the children including Christmas gifts.
This ministry is a true partnership of many as a resale shop in the city assists the quilters by providing their overage of denim jeans for quilt squares. The women also purchase sheets from the resale store and estate/garage sales to make quilt backs. Funds for these purchases come from individual members or their group funds. Often, fabric is donated to the group. After hearing about the quilt mission this year, the women were able to purchase new fabric from a quilter at a reduced cost. She also donated three quilts. As of November, the group has donated 547 quilts to foster children just this year and 2,276 quilts total.
Approximately 12 members work on the quilts year ’round. Three church members piece the quilt tops, three members back the quilts and several people, including a couple of husbands, help cut
fabric squares and tack the quilts.
Last year the women’s group applied for grant funding through the ODF Grants Program. The women wanted to purchase new fabric in bright, colorful children and youth friendly prints. The group received a $1,000 grant last year and this year to purchase a variety of fabric.
“Every quilt your group provides is a treasure. When you received the grant and were able to purchase a wider variety of kid-friendly prints, the joy just increased as children received a quilt,” wrote Lynne Roller, Executive Director of Citizens Caring for Children. “We can never thank you properly for this extraordinary gift of quilts. The children who receive them feel loved and cared for, and you have given them something to keep forever.”